Sri Lanka have every right to be in a confident mood heading into the two-T20I series against Bangladesh starting with the first match in Mirpur tomorrow. Having won the ODI tri-series and the Test series, they will look to make it a clean sweep by winning the T20Is and tying the knot on a dominant tour.
An important component in that plan will be their explosive all-rounder Thisara Perera, who was the player-of-the series in the tri-series because of his hard-hitting innings and incisive pace bowling. The burly all-rounder thought that to be successful they will just have to cash in on the momentum generated on the tour so far.
“I think as one-day players we gave good momentum to the Test players,” Perera said during training in Mirpur yesterday. “I think they [Test players] grabbed the momentum also. Now we have to do that in our T20.
“I played most of the games of my career in Bangladesh,” said Perera, who is a regular feature in the Bangladesh Premier League, with a smile. “It's good for me. Last time I played very well during the BPL. It's good not only for me but also for the team.”
He was diplomatic when asked who the favourites in the series were.
“Cricket is a game where you can't tell who will win or lose. But the team that commits fewer mistakes in the match will be victorious,” he said. The left-handed batsman who bowls right-handed curiously also said that he hoped Bangladesh will come back strongly. “I know Bangladesh will try to come back strongly because they lost two back-to-back series. I hope they come better than the last two series.”
When pressed on the issue, his real thoughts were revealed. ''Obviously, I am Sri Lankan and I'll always say that Sri Lanka are favourites.”